Where and when were you born?
I was born in 1989 in Libya, but my parents are from Gaza. We moved back to Gaza when I was five years old.
What is your family life like?
I have six sisters and two brothers. I am the middle child. My father works as a manager in a university and my mother stayed at home with me and my other siblings.
What experiences motivated you to pursue medicine?
When I was six years old, I told everyone that I wanted to become a doctor. In the last year of high school, I studied hard to get a scholarship, I had a 99.1 average - matching only five other students in the West Bank and Gaza.
I went on to attend Al Azhar University, a branch of Abu Dis University.
Why did you want to become a doctor?
I always wanted to help people. That is my motivation for entering the medical field. In Gaza, I participated in charitable work at Caritas Medical Center with Dr. Abu Jarad, a partner of Save a Child’s Heart to help local people receive the medical care they need. I had been joining him on Mondays at his cardiac clinic, [medical relief]. Then, we worked together at Caritas. He was the one who recommended me to the Save a Child’s Heart program.
What medical training have you received and where?
I had practiced anesthesia for 15 days before the outbreak of COVID-19 in Gaza. Due to COVID, I shifted and began dealing with the outbreak, providing home care to patients.
Why did you choose your specialty?
In my first year of medical school, we had a one-month training period in anesthesia. I immediately liked this department; it suited my personality. I had worked with patients who proved to me how important anesthesia is in the ICU.
How did you find out about the medical training program in Israel?
There are no pediatric cardiac anesthesiologists in Gaza. Here in Israel, I’ve been exposed to many things I’ve never seen before. No one can know what will happen in Gaza after five years. But maybe by then, we will have pediatric cardiac surgery in Gaza and maybe I will be a part of making that dream a reality.
Why did you decide to pursue the program with Save a Child's Heart?
Many doctors in Gaza recommended pursuing medical training in Israel. They told me it was a good opportunity to receive training and although it is a strange experience to study here and to enter Israeli society, It’s an interesting experience too. The level of medicine here is so strong and it was a great opportunity to get the chance to learn from my mentors here.
How long is your training in Israel for?
This program will be about 3-5 years.
What experiences have you had so far with Save a Child's Heart that have stuck out to you - can you share a story?
I hope for only one thing - the peace and health of my people. Save a Child's Heart represents both of these things brining health and hope to children and their families.